Collagen- A Beauty Protein

Collagen is the most important beauty protein in the body. As one ages, the elastic fibers and collagen, which provide support, resilience and elasticity to the skin, break down. This is mainly due to free radicals and age. Collagen helps the skin to fight wrinkles and retain its youthful look.

Collagen is damaged by sun exposure, certain age-related hormonal changes, free radicals and smoking. The dermis, the inner layer of the skin contains a large amount of collagen. One has to try to reduce the collagen breakdown and increase the supply.

Levels of protein required to make collagen is reduced as one grows older. The quality of collagen in the skin comes down. Over a period of time, the collagen fibers lose out on their moist texture and turn out to be rigid. Damage is mostly caused by free radicals. These free radicals attach themselves to collagen, resulting in the cross linking of individual fibers. These collagen strands bind together, becoming thick and do not yield to movement. Cross- linked collagen causes wrinkles to form and skin elasticity is also reduced.

Diet also plays an important role. Too much of saturated fat and cholesterol makes the collagen very inflexible and hard. This results in the skin being too resilient, causing deep wrinkles.

Ordinary foods and vitamins cannot supply the required collagen for a skin that is aging. Collagen supplements are available for healthy nails, hair and skin. It is available in the form of creams and injections.

New technologies to ensure supply of collagen to wrinkled areas are also available. One can inject human collagen produced through bio-technology. This approach reduces the risk of auto-immune and allergic reactions. The results are of course not very lasting. One can also stimulate skin cells to produce collagen.

A comprehensive approach should be taken towards collagen production. Vitamin C is useful to reduce wrinkles and build up collagen. There should be adequate supply of key amino acids for stimulation of collagen synthesis. Minerals, such as, copper peptides are also essential. They promote collagen synthesis and smoothen wrinkles. Growth factors and hormones also play an important role in collagen formation.

By ensuring adequate collagen supply, one can iron out wrinkles. It can be available in several forms. One must also try to protect oneself from collagen damage.

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